Arts event to open
An annual event aimed at promoting cultural and arts exchanges between Taiwan and other countries in the Asia-Pacific region will begin in Taipei next week, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said yesterday. The Asia-Pacific Culture Day will open on Sept. 6 and, despite the name, will run for two days, featuring music, dance and handicrafts from participating countries throughout the region, the ministry’s Department of East Asian and Pacific Affairs deputy director-general Bob Chen (陳龍錦) said. Participating countries will set up booths to introduce their cultures and products, Chen said. Performances will include modern and traditional dances from Japan, Tuvalu and the Solomon Islands, along with South Korean percussion performances, he said. The annual event is to be held at Huashan 1914 Creative Park, the ministry said.
Universities plan league
Top universities in Taiwan, China, Hong Kong and Singapore are set to form the “Pine League” in an effort to strengthen their partnership and promote academic, arts and sports exchanges, National Taiwan University (NTU) said on Monday. The universities are NTU; China’s Peking University and Tsinghua University; the University of Hong Kong; and the National University of Singapore. NTU said the universities, ranked the top five in the Chinese-speaking world, are all interested in pushing for the league to promote information exchange and cooperation. NTU president Yang Pan-chyr (楊泮池) said the league’s proposed name was inspired by pine trees being a symbol of perseverance, because they usually live for many years. He said the five universities are hoping to work together to contribute to society.
S Korean actress to visit
South Korean actress Ha Ji-won will begin a tour of Asia by meeting fans in Taiwan in October, South Korean media said, citing Ha’s representative agency, Haewadal Entertainment. The 36-year-old star gained popularity in the nation for her portrayal of the titular character in the South Korean period TV drama Empress Ki. She played the Korean wife of the last emperor of China’s Yuan Dynasty. In other news, Japanese all-female pop group HKT48 announced that it is set to hold its first concert in Taiwan in December. The concert is to be held at the ATT Show Box in Taipei on Dec. 7. The group was created in 2011 by Japanese record producer Yasushi Akimoto, who also produced the AKB48 franchise.
Poetry show unveils lineup
This year’s Taipei Poetry Festival will feature renowned Japanese poet Shuntaro Tanikawa, among more than 30 writers from home and abroad, organizers said yesterday. At a seminar during the festival, Tanikawa, 83, will speak about his work, said Taipei City Government’s Department of Cultural Affairs, which is organizing the festival. The festival, scheduled to run from Oct. 18 until Nov. 2, will also screen a documentary on Tanikawa, one of Japan’s most popular poets, the organizers said. Tanikawa, born in Tokyo, is quite prolific, having written more than 70 collections of poetry, the department said. It said Oksana Lutsyshyna of Ukraine, Joe Dunthorne of the UK and several Taiwanese poets will also be among the participating writers. The festival will include speeches, film screenings and music performances at venues around Taipei to present poetry in different ways, the organizers said.
The majority of parents surveyed in northern Taiwan favor the suspension of all on-site classes at schools from the junior-high level and below amid a surge in domestic COVID-19 infections, parent groups said yesterday. About 84.4 percent of respondents in a survey of 2,912 parents in northern Taiwan, where the outbreak is the most serious, said they supported suspending classes, the Action Alliance on Basic Education, the Taiwan Parents Protect Women and Children Association, and the Taiwan Love Children Association said. The groups distributed questionnaires to parents in New Taipei City, Taipei, Keelung, Taoyuan and Hsinchu city and county from Saturday morning
‘LONE WOLF’: The suspect was difficult to locate, as he did not use a cellphone, did not contact family and often lived in abandoned sites or parks, police said Taipei police on Thursday morning arrested a man accused of numerous burglaries and at least 14 incidents of sexual assault spanning more than 20 years, in what might be the nation’s most notorious crime spree in recent years. Sixty-year-old Tu Ming-lang (涂明朗) — who was yesterday placed in judicial detention, after a judge determined he was a flight risk without a fixed address — faces multiple charges of sexual assault and burglary, police said. A task force comprised of various law enforcement agencies arrested Tu as part of an investigation into an April 28 burglary in Daan District (大安), in which a
ASEAN BATTLEGROUND: Japan and Australia could be drawn into Pacific tensions as China sets its sights on the Diaoyutai Islands and further beyond the first island chain Tensions between China and the US in the Indo-Pacific region are expected to intensify, the National Security Bureau and Ministry of Foreign Affairs said, recommending that Taiwan continue to emphasize its shared values and interests to encourage resistance to Chinese aggression. US commitments in the Indo-Pacific region are expected to continue unabated despite the war in Ukraine, as Beijing takes advantage of the conflict to expand its influence in the region, the agencies said in reports delivered to the legislature’s Foreign Affairs and National Defense Committee on Sunday, ahead of a hearing yesterday on regional developments and trends. Although Russia’s invasion of
ONLINE REPORT: Confirmed cases filling out the online contact tracing report can check a box to indicate that a close contact had received a booster dose, an official said The guidelines for diagnosing COVID-19 have been revised to include people aged 65 or older who test positive with a rapid test that is confirmed by a healthcare worker, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday, as it reported 65,794 new local infections. The CECC had first announced the change on Monday, before publishing the new guidelines. Starting today, people aged 65 or older, regardless of whether they are undergoing home quarantine, home isolation or self-disease prevention, can be classified as a confirmed COVID-19 case by a healthcare professional, based on a positive result from an antigen rapid test, said